U.S. citizens who fell for a work from home scam that capitalized on the Google name are being refunded by the U.S. Federal Trade Commission (FTC).
The FTC said that it is sending out over 90,000 refund checks worth around $2.3 million to consumers who got caught up in the scheme and were charged hidden costs.
The scam, which operated under the names Google Money Tree, Google Pro, and Google Treasure Chest, had nothing to do with the Internet search giant and promised people who wanted to work from home the possibility of earning as much as $100,000 in less than a year.
The FTC smashed the scam back in 2009 under an operation called Operation Short Change. It said that the company behind it had been using the name and logo of Google fraudulently and asked people to hand over their financial and banking account information in return for a so-called "work-from-home kit."
There were a few problems with the proposition:
- There was no way to work from home and make money.
- It had nothing to do with Google.
- There were hidden, monthly charges being taken.
Under a settlement, those behind the scam are banned from trading in such a way again, and were forced to make repayments to the FTC.